Your digestive system has a very critical part to play in how healthy you are. Most people treat their digestion as though being constant throughout the year. Very few realize that our diet should be seasonal, as well as changing according to prakriti and vikriti.
Some people can eat and digest almost anything under the sun, whenever the wish, but others suffer from problems like heartburn and excess gas. It is important to understand one’s constitution of Doshas in order to know what foods are favourable for them to intake, and what foods to keep away from.
In Ayurvedic perspective, the digestive system is mainly governed by the three Doshas (Vata, Pitta and Kapha). Along with the digestive energy called Agni. Our health is adversely affected if the interplay between these three Doshas or the intensity of Agni goes out of balance. We all have different intensities of all four forces at play in our digestive processes. Their individual effects are discussed in brief as follows:
You would be classed as a vata type individual if you suffer from constipation, irregular bowel movements, and a loss of appetite. Vata is a dosha classed as both variable and delicate.
Those who would be classed as pitta generally have the best metabolism out of the three doshas. Although they consume a lot of food, their bodies can digest it very quickly. They will have an excellent appetite but not gain the weight that others do. What lucky people! They can, however, be prone to things like acid reflux and inflammations or ulcers. In Ayurveda, Pitta is essentially in charge of the GI tract and how well the acids and enzyme digest the food. Ayurvedic medicine therefore tries to help improve metabolism and digestion rate through the cultivation of something called Agni.
If you have slow digestion but have a very good appetite, you would be defined as a Kapha type. Kaphas normally, however, are prone to eating too much, leading to weight gain. I’m sure a lot of people would be classed in this category. Ayurveda has many ways to help you out if you are!
Agni, which is also known as digestive fire, is essentially the measure of how well you metabolize food and convert it into energy. The stronger the Agni, the better your health is effectively.
Key to understanding Ayurvedic medicine, diet, and philosophy is that you must consider what exercise you should be doing, what foods you are eating, and what meditations you should practice during different times of year. The seasons and environment also impact your digestion.